Civil Non-State Actors in Peacekeeping and Peacebuilding in West Africa
Bah, Abu Bakarr
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This paper advances the notion of civil non-state actors in peacekeeping and peacebuilding. Using Sierra Leone, Liberia, and Côte d’Ivoire as cases studies, the paper identifies three kinds of civil non-state actors in war-torn countries: international non-governmental organizations (NGOs), community-based NGOs, and ad hoc community organizations. In addition, it argues that civil non-state actors play a critical problem-solving role in peacekeeping and peacebuilding and complement the role of state actors. The paper examines the role of civil non-state actors through their dialectical affinity with state actors in the peacekeeping and peacebuilding processes. It further expands the notion of non-state actors in peacekeeping and peacebuilding to encompass community-based NGOs and ad hoc community organizations. Moreover, it points to the positive role of civil non-state actors and the wide range of activities they perform, especially in peace mediation and post-war reconstruction.